New Riff Releases First Ever Limited Edition Rye Whiskey

New Riff Balboa Rye Whiskey.

New Riff Distilling has announced the release of their first ever limited edition whiskey, a Bottled-in-Bond Balboa Rye Whiskey made with heirloom grains.

The new release will, like New Riff’s flagship rye, be a bottled-in-bond (4 year old, 100 proof), 100% rye grain whiskey, bottled without chill filtration. The big change comes in the mashbill- they’ll swap their standard rye grain for 95% heirloom Balboa Rye, and top with 5% malted rye. The distillery tells us the specialty grain bestows “exquisite notes of red and blue fruit along with piquant spice.”

Balboa Rye, an heirloom grain dating back to the 1940s, hasn’t been distilled in decades. Theirs is grown exclusively for the distillery at the Fogg Family Farm in Indiana. New Riff believes their Balboa Rye will be the only whiskey of its kind of the market today.

Heirloom grains are having a moment in the whiskey world – craft distilleries around the country are turning to their literal roots to make creative, nostalgic products with seeds passed from generation to generation. Jeptha Creed, in Shelbyville, Kentucky, makes a four grain bourbon with red “Bloody Butcher” corn, while South Carolina’s High Wire Distilling Co. has partnered with the university to cultivate Jimmy Red corn for their award-winning whiskey.

This will be the first release from the new Northern Kentucky distillery to feature an heirloom grain. Their first four whiskey offerings, Bottled-in-Bond, non-chill filtered Bourbon and Rye and Single Barrel, barrel proof, non-chill filtered Bourbon and Rye, have been well received by whiskey lovers and industry insiders. On their first entrance in the San Francisco World Spirits Competition earlier this year, the distillery took home five double gold medals, the first ever time that a new entrant had done so.

New Riff Balboa Rye will be available only in Kentucky for a suggested retail price of around $50. A limited number of bottles will be making to shelves this month, so keep your eyes peeled now if you want to get yours.

Caroline Paulus
Caroline Paulus is the Senior Editor for The Bourbon Review. She lives and writes in Lexington, Kentucky. Follow her on Instagram @misswhiskeyhistorian to keep up with her latest in bourbon news - and a few old finds, too.